Cameras: News and Updates
Hitachi Kokusai Electric America, a leading provider of affordable, high performance cameras, announced that MetroEast Community Media and Portland Community Media—two non-profit public access media centers serving Portland, OR—each installed eight Hitachi Z-HD5000 HDTV studio/field production cameras.
Brad Fisher at Diversified Systems, a national systems integration firm with an office in Portland recommended this camera based on its price performance. He placed the order with Hitachi Sales Representative David Morris on behalf of the two customers.
While the community media centers are not related, they often coordinate their equipment choices and studio configurations to ensure that their operational workflow will be familiar to all Portland residents who use both facilities. After Portland residents complete the training sessions, they are free to use the broadcast-quality studios to produce and cablecast Public Access, Educational, and Government (PEG) programming on any issue or topic.
“Both of these community media centers do an excellent job keeping their facilities running, and they do it on very limited funds. One way I feel I can help them is by making sure that their dollars are leveraged in the best way possible. I recommended the Hitachi Z-HD5000 camera because I felt it would enable their HD transitions at a very affordable price and give them the quality they deserve,” said Fisher.
Portland Community Media
Portland Community Media, which focuses on Multnomah County, receives 70 percent of its operating budget from the City of Portland. Despite the tight budget, Portland Community Media is nearly finished transitioning its facility to HDTV.
According to Bea Coulter, director of operations for Portland Community Media, they currently downconvert their HD programs to SD for broadcast by local cable systems. However, when these cable systems provide them with HD channels—which is expected within the next four months—they’ll be ready.
Five of the eight Hitachi cameras purchased in the summer of 2012 are situated in Studio A, and three are in Studio B. These 2/3-inch Hitachi Z-HD5000 HD cameras, which replace older 1/3-inch HD cameras, were chosen because they offer higher video quality at an affordable price point.
“We immediately recognized that this camera offers high-end functionality, and the ability to produce high-quality programming. Since the people who use our studio equipment are not video professionals, the user-friendliness of this camera was very appealing,” said Coulter. “These factors made the decision to choose this camera very easy. The training, tech support and service we’ve received from Hitachi has been great, so much more than I expected from an equipment vendor.”
MetroEast Community Center
MetroEast Community Center, which serves East Multnomah County and towns east of Portland, installed four of its eight Hitachi Z-HD5000’s in Studio A, which has a green screen for live graphics. The remaining four Hitachi cameras are in a fly-pack in a mobile video unit used for multi-camera remote productions, including town council meetings and high school sporting events.
MetroEast’s operating budget is funded in part by franchise fees collected from Comcast cable and Frontier Fios, two local cable systems that carry the programming. MetroEast also expects to be producing and broadcasting in full HDTV this summer.
According to Jamie Groce, technical manager for MetroEast Community Media in Portland, these Hitachi Z-HD5000 cameras are the first step in their transition to HD. “Budget was a big issue for us,” said Groce. “We felt that this camera had all the features we needed at a competitive price. So it came down to bang for the buck on an all-around great product.”
Their cameras are configured for digital fiber optic cabling, which Groce said enables them to have long cable runs fairly inexpensively compared to triax or multicore cabling. The durability of fiber optic cabling is especially important when the cameras are used for field production.
Both Portland Community Media and MetroEast Community Media received cameras outfitted with FUJINON HD lenses as well as Hitachi CU-HD500 camera control units and Hitachi RU-1000VR control panels. The Hitachi Z-HD5000 offers three high-sensitivity, low noise 2/3-inch IT CCDs in a lightweight 2-piece dockable camera body as well as 800 TVL resolution, F10 sensitivity, and 14-bit analog to digital conversion.
About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a leading global electronics company with approximately 326,000 employees worldwide. Fiscal 2012 (ended March 31, 2013) consolidated revenues totaled 9,041 billion yen ($96.1 billion). Hitachi is focusing more than ever on the Social Innovation Business, which includes information and telecommunication systems, power systems, industrial, transportation and urban development systems, as well as the sophisticated materials and key devices that support them.